Lucia Bronzetti blasts Taylor Townsend over apparent cheating in Miami match

Bronzetti calls out Townsend after she believes the American showed great lack of sportsmanship in their Miami match.

by Dzevad Mesic
Lucia Bronzetti blasts Taylor Townsend over apparent cheating in Miami match
© Getty Images Sport - Phil Walter

Lucia Bronzetti came across a video proving that she was right in her claims and made it clear that she was disgusted with Taylor Townsend denying that the ball ever hit her racket in the key moments of their Miami Open match. 

This week, 25-year-old Italian Bronzetti made her third Miami appearance. In the Miami first round, world No. 49 Bronzetti clashed against 72nd-ranked American Townsend, who previously won two qualifying matches to reach the main draw. 

With Townsend serving for the match in the 10th game of the third set, the third point of the game was played when Bronzetti hit a lob. Just as the Italian's ball was about to land, it appeared to hit the American's racket.

But the chair umpire didn't see it - and while Bronzetti tried to draw attention to what she believed happened - Townsend denied that her racket made contact with the ball as it was about to land. The point was awarded to Townsend, who then went 40-0 in that game before winning the next point to complete a 3-6 6-3 6-4 win.

Later, Bronzetti found a video that showed that Townsend did indeed make contact with the ball, which then changed direction after the contact. 

"I don't know which is worse... the chair umpire or the player who denied it," Bronzetti wrote on her Instagram Story.

How Bronzetti lost to Townsend?

In the first set, Bronzetti saved an early break point in the third game before earning the first break of the match in the eighth game for a 5-3 lead. Up by a break and with a chance to serve out for the first set, the Italian did exactly that in the ninth game.

Lucia Bronzetti
Lucia Bronzetti© Getty Images Sport - Matthew Stockman

After winning the first set, Bronzetti also started the second set with an early break and a 2-0 lead. But then, Bronzetti's level suddenly dropped as Townsend claimed back-to-back breaks to win five games in a row and open a 5-2 lead before serving out for a decider in the ninth game. 

In the third set, Townsend collected the first and lone break of the set in the fifth game and then firmly held on to her serve for the remainder of the set to complete a comeback win over Bronzetti. 

Taylor Townsend
Taylor Townsend© Getty Images Sport - Megan Briggs

In the end, Townsend's comeback win was shadowed by a moment from late in the match, which prompted Bronzetti to call out the American on social media.

Lucia Bronzetti Taylor Townsend